Talking Cloud and a Dose of Magic at Fortinet Accelerate 2019

Tim Woods

The stage for Fortinet Accelerate 2019 was set at the beautiful Walt Disney Dolphin resort and convention center making it a magical experience.

Attendance was equally magical as over 4000 people attended more than doubling attendance from the year before. We had the pleasure of engaging with people from across the globe as attendees from 40 different countries took part in this annual Fortinet event. I took note of representation from networking teams, security teams, c-level executives, compliance, DevOps, and business owners. For me, this underscored the growing awareness and interest in technology driving digital transformation. Across the board, as people visited the FireMon expo booth, our conversations consistently took us into concerns around cloud visibility, cloud adoption, and cloud migrations.  Not only were people expressing a need for greater visibility in the cloud but also for extended visibility at the edge of their cloud architectures.

It was abundantly clear that Fortinet CEO Ken Xie has his eye on the proverbial cloud ball ahead.  The show themes I observed revolved around 3 primary pillars.

The first was a focus on education in cybersecurity. It’s known there is a significant cybersecurity skills shortage with more jobs available than people to fill them. Fortinet plans to do their part by making education a primary focus in their business plan. At the Accelerate 2019 conference, every attendee was given a free voucher to take the Fortinet Network Security Expert (NSE) exam. The opportunity to earn this certification was backed up by pre-conference workshops, fast track workshops, and breakout sessions all to help attendees prepare and pass exams from NSE 4 to NSE 7.

Secondly, echoed across many sessions, was the message of continued commitment to the Fortinet ecosystem of “Fabric-Ready” partners which FireMon has been a participant of for many years.  Fortinet is constantly expanding its APIs, fabric connectors, and development tools adding additional value to partner integrations.

Lastly, but certainly not least, was the promised pursuit of technology innovation to support the digital transformation and cloud-first strategies of businesses ahead.  One prominent example of this was Fortinet’s announcement of an industry first SD-WAN ASIC to accelerate and secure the WAN Edge. Fortinet is claiming a 10X performance increase with the FortiGate 100F SD-WAN ASIC Appliance. No doubt organizations are adopting SD-WAN for faster and more cost-effective connectivity, but security must be an integral component of any selected solution. This announcement was received well by Fortinet customers as SDN hardware with capacity and integrated security is what customers want.  Given this new technology is hosted on FortiGate hardware with FortiManager support, you can bet FireMon has “Fabric Ready” arms wide open to embrace as soon as possible!

What about AI? Funny you should ask. I spent some time on the EXPO floor with the folks at the FortiGuard Labs booth. This team gathers and analyses over one hundred billion security events every day, yep that is 100,000,000,000. How do you look at that much data? The FortiGuard Labs uses a proprietary machine learning and artificial intelligence program called “Self-Evolving Detection System” (SEDS). SEDS employs a continuous training model to collect, analyze, and classify threats autonomously. This form of automation leads to the development of new defensive signatures that distribute across the connected Fortinet Security Fabric in real time. There was much more to explore, the Fortinet product portfolio covers a full spectrum of solutions, from VoIP systems, video surveillance, Next-Generation Firewalls, SIEM, email, IoT, wireless LAN, and much more.

 

 

All of this magic was available to see first-hand alongside the many partner solutions also displayed in the EXPO hall. Click here to download information about our integration with Fortinet. If you’re ready to learn more about FireMon’s “Fabric-Ready” support for Fortinet, then give us a shout. We would love to show you.